Plans to build an experimental, near-zero carbon dioxide emissions power plant in Illinois could be back in play. The U.S. Department of Energy cancelled the FutureGen project a little more than a year ago when it determined the project’s cost had doubled. But a new report finds the DOE miscalculated. Industry partners had agreed to fund a portion of the project, which many were anxious to see through. E-on U.S. senior vice president Paul Thompson chairs the industry’s FutureGen board.
“Right now we’re quite hopeful. There are still things to get done to make sure that as a private and public partnership this still makes sense. But we’re very hopeful we can put it back together,” says Thompson.
Thompson says the project could also have benefits for Kentucky. Scientists believe they can capture carbon emissions and inject them deep into underground wells for storage. But it has to be the right kind of geology. The Illinois site could be the proving grounds for similar geology in neighboring Kentucky.